Robert A. Sprague

April 20, 1932September 12, 2016

Robert (Bob) Sprague, of East Sandwich, and formerly of Plainville Connecticut, died peacefully at home on September 12th. Robert is predeceased by his wife, Eleanor, who died almost 30 years earlier, yet was always the love of his life. He is also predeceased by four sisters; Norma, Betty, Phyllis and Ellen as well as one brother Charlie. He has two surviving brothers Jimmy and Donny. Bob has two children Kathy Grant and Tom Sprague, who also reside in East Sandwich with their spouses, Stephen Grant and Lucy Sprague. He also has four grandchildren Kimberly Grant, Stephen Grant, Marcela Gonyer and Andre Sprague as well as four great grandchildren.

Bob earned his Masters in Metallurgical Engineering and spent his entire professional career with Pratt & Whitney Aircraft in East Hartford and General Electric in Cincinnati, Ohio. He retired in 1993 and went to dedicate a lot of time to working at the East Sandwich Game Farm. Bob and a handful of volunteers with the Sandwich Conservation Trust worked tirelessly to convert the property to pedestrian-friendly trails for which the Thornton W. Burgess Society now manages. A 5 acre parcel of land that runs along a wetland in East Sandwich, named Elinor’s Woods was a gift Bob made to the Trust in his wife’s honor in 1999. It 2006 Bob moved to Palm Harbor Florida where he worked for Sun Coast Hospice for several years as a volunteer in one of their thrift stores. In lieu of flowers donations made be made to the Sandwich Conservation Trust PO. Box 531 East Sandwich MA. 02537.

Relatives and friends are invited to attend a Memorial Service on Saturday, September 17, 2016 at 11:00 a.m. at the Nickerson-Bourne Funeral Home 154 Route 6A Sandwich, MA. In lieu of flowers donations may be made to the Sandwich Conservation Trust P.O. Box 531 East Sandwich MA. 02537.Arrangements under the direction of Nickerson~Bourne Funeral Home, Sandwich, MA.


  • Memorial Service

    Saturday, September 17, 2016


Robert A. Sprague

have a memory or condolence to add?

livian mayer

May 2, 2017

so sorry for your loss. he was a great man

Pete & Nancy Linko

January 19, 2017

Bob was a wonderful friend to Nancy and me. At work he was a casual, inspirational leader (Vision 2000), with a great sense of humor. I recall Ernie K relating the story of him trying to introduce a colleague of his to Bob who replied I already know enough people. At play, we could relate many stories but a favorite is when Bob and I were searching the Marblehead MA area for Mattie's Sail Loft and a late nightcap. We got there and it was full frolicking young folks. I said We finally found it. Bob said Yeah, but we're 30 years too late. Bob lived with us for a while; he cooked, mowed the lawn, partied (I learned Rusty Nails were not made of iron) and was like a member of the family. Sure miss him; everybody does.

Sonny Pierce

September 22, 2016

It was always a pleasure when Bob and Eleanor visited Marlene and I. My association with Bob began in the '60's when I worked for the Air Force and he was at P&W. We worked together on Titanium alloy heat treatment and more than once we traveled together as part of engine accident investigations.I later worked for him for a brief period at the Lab when we were both at GE. His insights into metallurgical and managerial events were legendary. He taught me so much, such as "it's better to be 90% right on time than 100% right after it's too late". I knew of his quick insight into all matters before Jack Welch became famous for having it. Kathy and Tommy I want you to know you're not alone missing him.

Ernie Kerzicnik

September 22, 2016

I knew Bob for many years first as a very respected competitor while at Pratt & Whitney and then as his marketing manager at GE. I was indirectly responsible for getting him to join GE. I first got Sonny Pierce to go to GE from the Air Force. Then when Bob was disenchanted with P&W he called Sonny and linked him into joining GE. He was great to work with and great as a friend. We had some very deep discussions about life when Eleanor was near the end of her life and my daughter, Kristin, was trying to survive two liver transplants. He always respected my thoughts. I thought he was such a wonderful inspiration to everyone around him. I will miss him dearly.

Richard Menzies

September 21, 2016

Although I did not know him well (being at the time only a young engineer in his organization) Bob had a big influence on my life. He had a clear vision and headed up a terrific team of managers in the materials lab throughout the '80s. He dramatically improved our morale and focus and provided a dynamic environment in which to work. Although an extremely busy man he would quite frequently come into my office to find out "how the troops were doing". I never did find out what he wanted but we always had a good chat! I am currently teaching a management course at our local university and have used him as an example of a good manager.

The world has lost a good man.

With condolences,

Cliff Shamblen

September 19, 2016

Bob was always an inspiration as the manager of our laboratory. He usually had great insights just after his suttle laugh. I will miss him!

Dana Moore

September 19, 2016

To the family of Mr. Robert Sprague: What wonderful memories you must have of this kind man. I worked at GE in Cincinnati during the years that Mr. Sprague served as our General Manager. He brought a friendly, caring, open-door environment to our lab that had not existed prior to his leadership. He had a joyous laugh that drew smiles from everyone and his positive attitude brought out the best in his employees. Even though many years have passed from his days at GE, he will be fondly remembered as an admired leader and a humble gentleman.
Rest in peace, Mr. Sprague.

September 18, 2016

Kathy and Tommy,
So sorry to hear of your loss. Bob was a good friend and a great leader who made tremendous contributions to the aircraft engine industry. We well remember a wonderful weekend with him on Cape Cod and many other business and social occasions.
Our sincere condolences.
Bob and Molly Hillery

September 18, 2016

Kathy & Tommy, Our heartfelt sympathy and condolences to you on the loss of your dad. Bob was my boss and good, good friend when he was in Cincinnati. We knew and loved Eleanor and were at her funeral. We had tried to reach Bob by phone and email in April for his birthday, but no responses or luck. He was a brilliant and successful leader at GE and he will be missed. I will send the obituary to the folks that knew him well.
Once again, our condolences. When you have time, please send us an email at telling us what happened. Mary Grace & Stan Friesen

Carolyn Sprague

September 17, 2016

Kathy & Tommy,
I'm sorry I won't be able to attend the memorial for your Dad today.
best wishes to you and your families.
You are all in my thoughts